Let's go to the plotting and planning first.... I've been on Pinterest for a while, but was really just messing around with it and wasting time before now, and not really seeing the point of it as far as writing is concerned. However, yesterday the light dawned.
Now to the envisioning of characters. That sort of came out of the Pinterest thing too. After a little searching, I found an image of a modern day young man which fitted my idea of what my hero looks like. But I needed to take him back to another time and make him a bit different to fit what I had in mind. How to do that? I have an iPad app called InspirePro (it's the one David Hockney uses) which has, quite literally, inspired me to try my hand at painting again. It's amazing and fun, and has rekindled my love of messing about with colour and technique experimentation. I thought I'd give remodelling the photo a go with that.
Here's the image I found (I wish I knew where it came from originally - apparently he's a male model, but unfortunately I can find no photo credit to acknowledge).
I still need to do some work, but he's pretty much how I imagine my character to look, barring the nose (which needs to be bigger) and the hair, (which needs to be shinier). Still, it's a start, and I'm going to do the same with my other main characters when I find images which suit them, as this small expenditure of effort has already helped me to connect with who my hero is.
Do any other writers do stuff like this? I'd love to know.
Lucy's new picture book, Bear's Best Friend, is published by Bloomsbury
"A charming story about the magic of friendship which may bring a tear to your eye" Parents in Touch
"The language is a joy…thoughtful and enjoyable" Armadillo Magazine.
"Coats's ebullient, sympathetic story is perfectly matched by Sarah Dyer's warm and witty illustrations." The Times
Her latest series for 7-9s, Greek Beasts and Heroes is out now from Orion Children's Books.
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Lucy is represented by Sophie Hicks at Ed Victor Ltd